British Government: NHS Coverups Now Illegal

by Nathaniel Botwinick

This morning, the British government released a major report outlining 290 recommendations for the country’s health-care system, the National Health Service. The move came in response to widespread disgust over the failures of Britain’s nationalized system, epitomized by the Stafford Hospital scandal, in which between 400 and 1,200 preventable deaths occurred from 2005 to 2008 at one hospital.

The report accuses the NHS of “putting corporate self-interest ahead of patients” and “conclud[es that] the failings went from the top to the bottom of the system,” in the BBC’s words. One specific recommendation is to implement the “duty of candor,” a statute that requires the NHS to be honest about mistakes and underperformance. In other words, Britain’s hospitals can no longer cover up their failures, something you’d think would have been required a long time ago.